Wildomar's Planning Commission. I was at the corner of Mission Trail and Malaga at the edge of town when I noticed this older gentleman. He was moving very slowly. He told me that he was 91 years old, and asked me if I'd help him across the street. I was happy to, but was concerned for him because of how frail he was.
|1: where we started; 2: our first rest; 3: we made it to the corner; 4: where we waited for what seemed like an eternity.|
First he called me "grandson", then upped it to "great grandson".
If my grandfather were still alive, he'd be 97.
He instructed me on how to assist him, so I did the best I could. I supported him under his left shoulder and we started the arduous journey.
The first street, Malaga, wasn't so bad, because it has hardly any traffic on it. It took two light cycles to get across. The scary part came next. Crossing a much larger road, Mission Trail. I pushed the button and we just made it to the halfway spot when the lights had changed. I was so pleased, and somewhat astonished, to see how courteous the drivers were, even the young driver... willing to miss their green lights to let us go, but he waved them through, so as to not inconvenience them. I was pretty much sweating bullets since we were practically standing in the north bound lane.
Once safely on the other side, I asked him his name. "Ata" he told me, then he reminded me that he was 91 years old, from Iran and in the USA for the last 35 years (I'm guessing he got out just as the Ayatollah took over). He wished me a good life as we parted.
|Ata, 91, not letting his age or infirmities prevent him from getting out... just needing some help now and then.|
It was a moving experience, and not only because it was the first time I'd deliberately stood in the middle of a busy street, but because I helped a stranger that was in need. Not only that, but that he and I are come from such different backgrounds and that made the experience all the sweeter.
We are all busy, but let me suggest that if you find yourself in a similar situation... let yourself be late to whatever mundane thing it is that is next on your list and help the person.